The frigid temperatures in Vermont Saturday were the coldest in a relative sense since February 26th and almost the coldest of the entire winter season. On the mountain, temperatures climbed to about 6 which was only 2 degrees warmer than where they were on December 16th. Impressive stuff given that we are well into the month of March. I know, I know, it's cold and so what, can we bag this storm or can't we already ?
As of midday Sunday, models are still fighting it out over small details but remain supportive of mostly the same consensus that was established a few days ago. A strong low pressure center will take shape near Cape Hatteras Monday evening and rapidly intensify while moving northeastward. The center of the storm will pass just east of Cape Cod Tuesday evening. From there, the storm will move quickly in the Canadian Maritimes. This "consensus" has Mad River Glen on the northwestern edge of the swath of heaviest snowfall with amounts in the 8-16 inch range. The snow would begin early Tuesday, the heaviest snowfall would occur Tuesday evening and light snow and blustery conditions would continue into Wednesday.
In spite of this relatively stable "consensus" we have seemingly established, models have repositioned themselves in could almost be called a complete "about face". The American GFS model has the storm tracking roughly 75 miles east of Cape Cod, the European ECMWF has the center of the storm within eyesight of Provincetown while our beloved Canadian model has the storm passing just east of Boston. The trend in the latter two models mentioned is certainly encouraging and it leaves me once again anxiously awaiting another run of the Euro. Though Boston snow lovers would likely flip me off, nothing would please me more than seeing their snow totals get held down by a changeover to rain while MRG scores that elusive 2-3 footer. It's close folks, I wouldn't forecast that quite yet but that outcome has not yet been eliminated.
We can certainly be assured of a continued stretch of subfreezing temperatures. This began Thursday in spite of our disappointing snowfall totals and will likely continue into the upcoming weekend. The bigger questions involves the outcome of another potential winter storm. The storm will appear rather innocuous as a broken piece of what will be some rather intense storminess in the Gulf of Alaska this upcoming week. In typical early spring fashion, the storm is indicated to undercut a receding polar jet which is good and bad. The good is that it won't warm excessively on the weekend of the 18th and 19th, the bad relates to the fact that the storm might pass well south of northern New England. There will almost certainly be changes as to the particulars of this forecast period so stay tuned.
What appears more certain is that our mildest day over the next 10-12 days occurs around Monday March 20th. The 21st-23rd should feature a good surge of cold weather that will ensure a continuation of winter through at least the end of the week. There are hints of milder weather way out toward the end of March but this is too far out on the horizon.